War Poet.ca - A CFAP Project by Suzanne Steele

drugs (from May Day)


o M,

your voice the other night. soft as January. firelight.
your SAT phone. somewhere. in the cool desert.
tell me, why do soldiers speak so. softly.

do they teach you that?

J says you are my heroin. says I should get out. find some methadone. wean off my delicious drug. so I did. last night. a party. poets. live band. sushi (your favourite—I hate the stuff, so small and picky, so neat and tidy). wine. beer. some drugs. dancing. and four men. came to me. one almost made the cut. a poet. said he liked my laugh. told me he’s a good kisser. scrawled his hotmail acct. on the back leaf of my moleskine.

too close to where I hold your pictures. safe. you marching. Bosnia. Golan Heights. Afghanistan. your tan uniform. sharp as a needle. straight into my heart. you so filled. with purpose.

I watched poet with other women at the party. kiss their hands. arm their waists. and then, when he was alone for a minute. preen his long silvering hair. check himself out in any shiny surface. mirror. glass tabletop. wine glass.
weedy.

took out my pen. scratched his info off my precious book.

J went with me to the party. we sat on the sidelines. over a beer, he told me that opium fields reek of fetid rhubarb. when poppies’ swollen bellies. bleed milky white. ready to become. the world’s great pacifier. heroin.

and J says cannibis grows ten feet tall in Afghanistan. showed me a picture of himself standing in a field. giant plants. his arm around one of them. like it was the green man. smiling.

I asked him if you guys ever grab a handful. smoke it. later on. he says no. they make us take pee tests. random. drug checks. besides, he says, nobody wants to patrol mud villages. 10 ft high walls laced with snipers. roads pilled with IEDs. with the guy in front or the guy behind. covering their arcs. C6 in hand. all fucked up.

and I tell him I’d never go on stage after a drink. ever. and I don’t want to share the stage with anyone drunk. or on drugs. and I tell J about the time I danced to a cantaor from Spain. amazing gypsy singer. the real thing. long, curly black hair. beautiful man. but he kept dropping lines. going off on melismatic tangents. without any warning. and I did my best. had to sit back. do some of my, “I’m just hanging out” footwork. until he got back to the task at hand. and I managed to pull it out of the fire. just. later on, when I dropped him at the airport. he pocketed my favourite flamenco CD. said, “next time you’re in Jerez chica , give me a call. you can come dance at my Pena.” I said, “ya, sure”

no M, no drugs. no drink for me. before or during a show. performance is enough of a hit. anyway. a huge rush.

o M, it’s winter again. at dusk today, I drove to the lagoon. the forest. wide and green. walked to Sitting Lady Falls. the water has receded a bit. she’s shed her white water burka. she’s showing her face. her legs. more relaxed. (must be back at KAF I guess)

it’s getting lighter. every day.

I broke a branch of cedar. held it to my face. txted you. again. another little shot.

though I know you won’t receive it
for a long, long time.

S


About This Page

The page you're reading contains a single diary entry entitled drugs (from May Day). It was posted here on January 19, 2009.

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